Santos Alfonso Nieves Baez, is a 23 year old native of Caguas,
Puerto Rico. His demeanor reflects a determination to succeed in
life not only as a civilian in Puerto Rico but as a member of the
U.S. Marine Corps Reserve.
Baez serves as a lance corporal
with Detachment 1, Landing Support Company, Combat Logistics
Regiment 45, 4th Marine Logistics Group. He works as a landing
support specialist but also fills any position that is needed,
including working in the armory or in communications.
October 20, 2016 - Lance Cpl. Santos Alfonso Nieves Baez, a
landing support specialist with Detachment 1, Landing Support
Company, Combat Logistics Regiment 45, 4th Marine Logistics Group,
before the Marine Corps Reserve Centennial celebration concert
begins at the Centro de Bellas Artes de Humacao. Baez was joined by
his unit, Marine Corps Band New Orleans and members of the Puerto
Rican community to commemorate the Centennial of Marine Corps Forces
Reserve. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Sgt. Sara Graham)
At first, Baez wasn't sure about the military. It was his
grandfather who served as an infantryman in the U.S. Army
who was a significant factor in his life and held great
influence on his choice to become a Marine.
a promise to my grandfather, who fought in the Korean War,
and was saved by a Marine. I always felt connected with that
Marine for saving my grandfather,” said Baez.
added that the bond between himself and his grandfather was
“I used to ask him ‘why me? Why focus on
me when you have so many grandchildren?' He said to me, ‘I
see in you the sprit and leadership that I don't see in
Even after his grandfather became ill from
a cerebral stroke, Baez continued to remain close and cared
for him for six years until he passed away in 2011.
“It was when I was about to graduate high school. It was a
difficult point for me because I had to watch him
deteriorate, but I was prepared to lose him,” Baez said.
Holding true to his promise Baez joined the Marine Corps
Reserve. He also attends school to study accounting and
business. Additionally, Baez works with his father to build
a business of education management, which is a business that
helps school aged kids in their primary studies.
They also have goals to provide seminars on resume writing
and on how to apply for jobs for those looking for
Baez said that once he found out his
father was looking to kick off this business, he wanted to
be a part of it.
“I wanted to do it because I am one
of those people that cares more for others than myself. I
just like helping people.”
With his determination to
do well in both the civilian world and the Marine Corps,
Baez added that experiences from both have helped him become
more successful, and he has big plans for the future.
Currently he is finishing his degree in accounting and
hopes to receive a commission in the Marine Corps.
Baez went on to say, “One of my goals is to be an infantry
officer, and I don't want to retire without being a colonel.
If I can achieve more, that's even better.”
Ultimately what drives Baez to succeed is the relationships
he has found with his fellow Marines.
camaraderie in my unit is awesome. Some of us even study in
the same college, and we stay in contact with the guys that
go to the IRR or join other branches when they get out. It
is an unshakable bond that we have.”
By U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Sara Graham
The U.S. Marines
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